2007 Mazda MX-5 Miata

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$20,585

starting MSRP

2007 Mazda MX-5 Miata

Key specs

Base trim shown

Overview

The good:

  • Handling potential
  • Performance potential
  • RWD layout

The bad:

  • Pending further review

7 trims

Starting msrp listed lowest to highest price

Wondering which trim is right for you?

Our 2007 Mazda MX-5 Miata trim comparison will help you decide.

Notable features

  • Soft-top or new power-retractable hardtop
  • 2.0-liter four-cylinder
  • Choice of three transmissions
  • Standard side-impact airbags

2007 Mazda MX-5 Miata review: Our expert's take

By

The verdict:

Versus the competiton:


The Miata hardtop has arrived.

And if you thought the soft-top Miata was a great little car, you’ll probably be thrilled with the hardtop version.

I realize that some convertible fans don’t care for hard tops, believing that only a soft top truly makes a car a convertible.

For those people, the soft-top version of the Miata is still offered. But for those who want the conveniences that a hard top offers – including more security, a quieter ride with the top up, and better protection from the weather.

Our test vehicle was so quiet with the top up at highway speeds that it wasn’t anything like riding in a ragtop.

Mazda completely reworked the Mx-5 Miata for 2006, with a beefier new look. The new model debuted with only the soft top available, but for 2007, the hard top has been added to the model mix., with a base price of $24,945 (including freight) vs. $21,030 for the lowest-priced soft-top model. The hard top is offered only in the top three trim levels, however, so the $24,945 price is for the Sport hardtop model, whose corresponding soft-top version lists for $23,835. That means the hard top costs an additional $1,110.

It’s worth the money, because other than the conveniences already mentioned, the hard top is power operated, while the soft top has to be manually lowered and raised.

Another great feature is the way the top folds into the space behind the front seat, rather than taking up space in the trunk. That leaves room for a couple of suitcases or two golf bags in the Miata’s trunk. The new Pontiac and Saturn roadsters have virtually no space in their trunks when their tops are down (neither one offers a hard top, either).

The hard top also could help the Miata overcome its somewhat undeserved reputation as a woman’s car. Whether the Miata could ever really be considered just a chick car remains a matter for debate.

More women than men buy the Miata, but men like this car, too. It has always been a good-looking car that is fun to drive, and those are attributes anyone should like. Men who drive them always seem to be having fun, and don’t look embarrassed to be seen driving a Miata.

Besides the roominess in the trunk, the Miata also seems to have a roomier interior. I’m a big guy, and I found the car quite comfortable even on a long drive. I was in a the Pontiac Solstice a few days earlier, and found it to be so cramped that my right leg was hurting just a few minutes into my drive. With the redesign, the Miata – with either soft or hard top — more fun to drive than ever. Throttle response was outstanding in our test car, the hardtop Touring model (base price $26,360 with freight) with the six-speed manual gearbox.

Steering also seemed more crisp than before, and the car had great road-hugging abilities on some fun curvy Hill Country roads. That might have been in part due to the optional sport suspension package ($500) on our car, which included Bilstein shocks and a limited-slip differential.

Even with the top down at highway speeds, the wind in the cockpit is not overwhelming, and I didn’t need to raise the side windows to minimize the air flow.

Lowering the hard top down is quick and easy, and can be done while sitting in the driver’s seat. A single lever in the middle unhooks the top from the windshield, and then pushing a switch on the dash lowers the top in about 25 seconds. Another switch beside that one is used to raise it again.

The soft top, however, has to be raised or lowered manually, although it, too, can be done from the driver’s seat without even unbuckling the seatbelt.

With the top up, the Miata cools down quickly with its super-cold air conditioning. With the soft top, the cockpit is quite noisy whether the top is up or down, but it’s amazing how quiet the car is with the hard top up. The top also helps give the car more rigidity, so it doesn’t shake when it hits bumps in the road the way the soft-top models do with the top up.

The cockpit has more room than before, especially for small items and drinks. There are two cupholders in the center console and one each in the doors, a big plus over the Solstice and Saturn Sky. Behind the seats is room for a couple of purses or, in our case, a purse and a camera bag. One of the complaints about the original Miata was that there was so little interior space that if two women were riding in the car, one would have to hold two purses in her lap.

Nowhere on this car does the name “Miata” appear. Mazda has said that it was dropping the Miata part of the name with the redesign, calling the new model the MX-5 only. But the manufacturer’s window sticker calls it the “MX-5 Miata,” so the name hasn’t completely disappeared. With the popularity of the Miata in the United States, it’s going to be hard to lose the name.

Upon introduction in 1989, the Miata single-handedly revived the whole affordable-roadster segment, and was seen as a modern, more-reliable replacement for the little British and Italian roadsters of the ’60s and ’70s – such as those from Triumph, Fiat, MG and others. That formula didn’t change with the new generation. The car is even more affordable than ever as the base price has been lowered to $21,030, down from just over $23,000 for the 2005 model.

This new generation is still instantly recognizable as a Miata, even though no parts carried over from the previous model. Compared with the 2005 model, this third-generation Miata is 1.6 inches longer and wider, and 0.6 inches taller. Wheelbase has increased by 2.6 inches, to 91.7, and overall length is 157.1 inches.

Under the hood is a new 2.0-liter engine, a version of the powerplant Mazda uses in some of its other vehicles, including the Mazda 3 and Mazda 6 sedans.

Horsepower was boosted to 170, up from 2005’s 142. That is almost as much as the 178 horsepower that was found in the uplevel turbocharged MazdaSpeed Miata for 2005.

A five-speed manual gearbox is standard; and a six-speed manual is used on uplevel models, including our test car, the Touring model. The top trim level is the Grand Touring model, which lists for $26,955 with the manual gearbox and hard top.

A six-speed automatic transmission borrowed from the RX-8 is optional for those who would rather not have to bother with a clutch and manual shift. Still, manual shifting is the best way to go with a car like this, which is meant for people who like to drive, and who like the control that a manual shifter gives the driver.

The six-speed manual has a short throw, which makes the car easy to shift through all six of those gears.

With this transmission, our car, with its 12-gallon fuel tank, was EPA rated at 24 miles per gallon in the city and 30 mpg on the highway.

In the past, the Miata was built mostly of unique components. But to save money, the car now shares components across the Mazda lineup. It is such economies of scale that help an automaker reduce costs on the design, engineering and manufacture of new models.

The MX-5 is built on the same assembly line in Japan with the more-expensive, rotary-powered RX-8 sports car, but the two vehicles are completely different. The Miata is not a down-sized version of the RX-8. Among the MX-5’s components common among several Mazda models are the antilock brakes, electronic stability control, audio systems, door locks, and some interior parts, the company said.

Among standard features on our Touring model were 17-inch alloy wheels, four-wheel antilock disc brakes, body-color bumpers, air conditioning, heated leather seats and leather-wrapped steering wheel, power windows/mirrors/door locks, fog lights, an aluminum hood, dual silver exhaust outlets, cruise control, and a Bose audio system with seven speakers. The audio system and cruise control can be operated by switches on the steering wheel.

The only other option on our tester was a premium package ($1,250), which added keyless entry and start (the driver can keep the key fob in his pocket), xenon headlights, electronic stability and traction control, and an anti-theft alarm.

Total sticker, including freight and options, was $28,670.

G. Chambers Williams III is staff automotive columnist for the San Antonio Express-News and former transportation writer for the Star-Telegram. His automotive columns have appeared regularly in the Star-Telegram since 1995. Contact him at (210) 250-3236; chambers@star-telegram.com.

At a Glance: 2007 Mazda MX-5 Miata The package: Subcompact, rear-drive, two-passenger, two-door, four-cylinder, hard- or soft-top convertible sports car. Highlights: Redesigned for 2006, this is the third generation of Mazda’s little two-seat roadster, introduced in 1989 and previously redesigned in 1999. It’s slightly bigger and more powerful than the previous model, and has no carryover parts. For 2007, the optional power hardtop version has been added. Negatives: Limited trunk space, although much better than its key competitors. Engine: 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder. Power/torque: 170 HP/140 foot-pounds. Transmissions: Five-speed or six-speed manual; six-speed automatic. Length: 157.3 inches. Curb weight: 2,441-2,602 pounds. Brakes, front/rear: Disc/disc, power, antilock. Steering: Rack and pinion, power. Trunk volume: 5.3 cubic feet. Side air bags: Standard. Electronic stability control: Optional. Major competitors: Pontiac Solstice, Saturn Sky, Honda S2000, BMW Z4. EPA fuel economy: 23-25 miles per gallon city/30 highway. Fuel capacity: 12.7 gallons. Base price range: $20,435-$27,460 plus $595 freight. Price as tested: $28,670 including freight and options (hardtop Touring model). On the Road rating: 9.5 (of a possible 10).

Consumer reviews

Rating breakdown (out of 5):
  • Comfort 3.9
  • Interior design 4.3
  • Performance 4.7
  • Value for the money 4.8
  • Exterior styling 4.7
  • Reliability 4.7

Most recent consumer reviews

5.0

Makes the journey fun

Sporty car that handles well and has plenty of power. Top down or top up the ride is a joy. Very reliable and in great condition - exterior, interior and under the hood.

4.9

The Mx5 has made me a better driver

It was love at first test drive....I went to buy a 2007 Mini Cooper S 6 speed, well when I got to the dealer and the Cooper was sold, but they had just gotten a 07’ stormy blue mica Mx5 5-spd. I never even wanted an Mx5 but I took it out for a test drive, loved it and I bought it the next day. That was 10 years ago. I still have that Mx5 and it is my daily driver, I’ve kept it up and do maintenance regularly and keep all the paperwork. The most expensive thing that I’ve had to replace is the soft top which I did myself, but will never do again. I chose the cloth over vinyl it wasn’t too much more (Remember if your windows are tinted & you replace the top you have to re-tint the back window bc it’s glass w defrost) FYI. Other that that I’ve replaced the tires 2x. And the spark plugs 1x, I have added a K&N air filter. I’ve replaced the battery 2x and thats it. I can say that this car has given me peace of mind by how reliable and fun it is. Mazda recommends premium fuel so I’ve always used premium fuel. Ya I know that sucks but it’s worth 12.7 gallons of premium fuel for a completely full tank, that’s lasts approximately 400 miles. I have thought about replacing it with the Mini Cooper S, but I just love the Mx5’s rear wheel drive and light weight reliability I mean Mazda has gotten this car down to almost perfect. Don’t let people influence your buying by saying it’s a girls car or a hairdressers car or even a gay persons car. They actually did a study and not one hairdresser owned an Mx5. They mostly owned pt cruisers and mini Coopers. FYI (not that your profession has anything to do with a car!!!?) If that were true go then go (Mx5 hairdressers/girls!!!) bc they’re on to something most men don’t know, it’s one of the most raced cars on the planet. Enough about stereotypes. The facts are it’s been around 3 decades. It’s also landed a semi permanent place in the Guinness book of world records being the best selling sports car in the world. So don’t be surprised if your at a red light in your F250 and a girl or guy or hairdresser in an Mx5 is next to you bc they can and might make you look like an idiot in front of your passengers. By flying off the line before you Even know the light is green trust me I’ve done it more than once, and they usually meet up at the next light yelling at you to slow down, while they are yelling at you see green and do it all over again, LoL they’ll more than likely get behind you at this point thinking that they can blind you with their lights. Just flip the pwr mirror button to the far left and tilt your mirror up bc it blinds the driver back (instant Karma) that being said the Mx5 is not a luxury car, But it’s not supposed to be. I like to think of it as a smart man or woman’s race car. It has everything that you will want or need. Unless you don’t want to feel Or hear the engine along with your z-rated tires screaming and leaving their DNA on the road. Look the car up read a few articles and then test drive one (manual) if possible, but even the automatics have paddle shifting (I’ve never driven an automatic Mx5). Whatever version you choose I’m sure it will “WoW” you if you’re new to this classic automobile. After all the only thing you have to miss out on is the time of your life. Cheers 🍻 2007 Mazda Mx5 Sport Stormy Blue Mica w convenience package Added camel Factory leather, heated seats, K&N air and oil filters, replaced blk vinyl top with blk canvas top. 5-spd w 145,000 miles.

4.1

Not an all weather car!

The Mazda Miata MX5 was a really great car, if you have a car for winter as well as one for summer. I would recommend it for 3 of the 4 seasons but NOT for WINTER!! I really should have known better but I didn't ! Style was great as was the hardtop convertible portion of it! 12 seconds up and down! The color was highland green ( same as Steve McQueen's mustang from the Bullitt film ! I loved it but in the complex that I live in, you can only have 1 car!

See all 43 consumer reviews

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